New Zealand's most northerly population of brown kiwi is thriving due to Whakaangi Landcare Trust at Hihi.
The latest counts carried out on the peninsula south of Mangonui indicate the population is now more than 300 - far outstripping previous years' counts. The trust celebrates its 15th year in 2013 and convenor Colin Salt said he is thrilled at its progress.
"We began as a group of landowners concerned about the deteriorating state of our local environment," Mr Salt said.
"Possums were rampant, the bush was dying and we knew how threatened kiwi were by pests like stoats and rats.
"We formed the Whakaangi Landcare Trust and started the long process of finding funders who would work with us to develop a robust pest management programme."
Financial support has come from Department of Conservation, Northland Regional Council, Kiwis for Kiwi and Pub Charities.